The calves are really coming now. Some of them from unexpected corners. Anna and I were driving out to look at cows one day and we saw one of the heifers that we just let out standing off by herself. I thought it was a little strange and then I noticed that she seemed to have a full bag. Weird. We drove on to the other cows. She managed to catch up with us. This time she had a tiny little calf in tow. Now it's more than weird. This cow is supposed to be just over a year old, which means that it was bred at about three months. Okay. I maay have made a mistake in matching up cows and calves last year. I'm still trying to perfect the system. So, now I have to go into the database and correct the birthday. It is possible that I pegged her to the right mama cow, but she was one of last year's calves still nursing. Or, I could have just guessed. I will not be doing that this year. The bottom line is that we are still working out the kinks in the system.
That was the mistake. Now I will tell you where we did good; or at least better. Since a couple of weeks after we turned the heifers out, we have been missing heifer number 59. We've been wondering about it. Saturday, Dad and Linda and I were driving through town and some other pastures to get to our hay field. One of our neighbors has a herd of black angus-type cows and they are all tagged with similar tags. I started to mention to Dad (almost in jest) that if he sees a tag number 59 it's ours. Right about that time, we both saw a fresh Bar Z brand on one of them. Her head was behind a tree, but I told Dad the number before seeing it. I think he was impressed by that. So, we have a fence issue somewhere, but we did find our missing cow. It also is an argument in favor of continuing to brand our cows. With the whole world going to identical cows it is probably a good idea.
Also on Saturday, Dad brought the bull down. We are moving the breeding season up a couple of months. Last year the extreme heat kind of put the damper on the amorous spirit I guess. This is why we had kind of a poor calf crop. So, we are bumping it up a bit. The calves will be born in the middle of winter, but winters are so mild here that it shouldn't make that much of a difference. We'll probably palpate in September or October of this year and wean around the same time next year. I think it's a better schedule for marketing and production, but we'll see.